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Data from: Early emergence increases survival of tree seedlings in Central European temperate forests despite severe late frost

Citation

Bianchi, Eva; Bugmann, Harald; Bigler, Christof (2019), Data from: Early emergence increases survival of tree seedlings in Central European temperate forests despite severe late frost, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.7h95044

Abstract

Global warming is expected to result in earlier emergence of tree seedlings that may experi-ence higher damages and mortality due to late frost in spring. We monitored emergence, characteristics and survival of seedlings across ten tree species in temperate mixed deciduous forests of Central Europe over one and a half year. We tested whether the timing of emergence represents a trade-off for seedling survival between mini-mising frost risk and maximising the length of the growing period. Almost two-thirds of the seedlings died during the first growing period. The timing of emer-gence was decisive for seedling survival. Although seedlings that emerged early faced a se-vere late frost event, they benefited from a longer growing period resulting in increased overall survival. Larger seedling height and higher number of leaves positively influenced survival. Seedlings growing on moss had higher survival compared to mineral soil, litter or herbaceous vegetation. Synthesis. Our findings demonstrate the importance of emergence time for survival of tree seedlings, with early emerging seedlings more likely surviving the first growing period.

Usage Notes

Location

Zurich
Switzerland
Central Europe